If you haven't been playing Tales From the Borderlands, now is the time to jump on board. The wait has been long for the third episode, but the action and story-telling make up for that. An interesting new villain, old faces, a lost ATLUS facility, and a possible romance are all in store for the third episode.
After seeing Fiona and Rhys talking again to their mysterious captor, we pick up right where the previous episode left off. Depending on whether you trusted Fiona or Handsome Jack leads to two different scenarios. Given the nature, choosing Jack will result in a more violent sequence with the body count rising quickly. Upon making your way back to the surface you are introduced to Vallory, who is none too happy about being screwed out of the deal from episode 1. Soon after, we find out Athena's true intentions before kicking off the third episode's intro sequence.
This episode plays a little extra attention to the characters and how they react with each other. About halfway through Rhys and Fiona split, with Sasha and Athena respectively. The interactions between each of the two separate groups is really quite enjoyable, and one of the reasons this episode is great. Whether it is Rhys seemingly falling for Sasha, or Athena teaching Fiona how to be a Vault Hunter, the character building that started in the first episode stays strong. Fiona really stands out in this episode, as she grows up before our eyes. A little tough love from Athena starts to turn Fiona into a more dependable character, whose confidence takes a big boost. By the end, Fiona is a confident and dependable character that can hold her own.
Then there is Rhys, who is still what we have come to expect from the first two episodes. He is still great, but does not have quite the same level of development as Fiona. His relationship with Sasha develops more, and almost looks like love is in the air. That is short lived however as the two find trouble, ironically in the air. Jack is back and still great, even though he is not as prevalent as previous episodes. Still, there is an interesting conversation between him and Rhys in the second act that could have severe consequences. Handsome Jack reacts accordingly to the choice you make, which can bring some relief or fear of what is to come. Side with Jack and make him happy, but tell him to get lost brings a VERY stern warning.
Valroy is the new antagonist introduced in this episode, who is the main boss who got screwed over in the vault key deal. She is a typical hard-ass, take-no-crap villain who is not afraid to bust a cap in someone. Valroy is mean, but she lacks the unique personality that makes Vasquez stand out as a villain.
However, Catch A Ride is not perfect. Lip syncing is still bad in some spots and this is something that really should be fixed. It is not a deal breaker by any means, but when each episode is several months apart and the problem persists, there really should be no excuse.
Your choice on how you handled the loaderbot in episode one does not seem to have a bearing here. The loaderbot would have two different attitudes toward Rhys depending on what he decided in the first episode, but that is forgotten in Catch A Ride. A minor complaint, just curious as to why that decision does not continue in future episodes. Fiona can still find and collect money, and again the decision to spend money is purely on cosmetics. If you like messing with the look of the characters, then you will enjoy the option when you get to it. I am hesitant to spend with the fear that I am going to need that money later in a really big decision. I just wish spending cash was used on more than just cosmetics.
Even with a few snags, Catch A Ride is still a great episode that is entertaining the whole way through. The humor is funny and clever as ever, while the development of characters continues to be a strong point. A few familiar vault hunters appear near the end of the episode, putting a time-line on where these events take place in relation to the Borderlands timeline. Even with another long delay, episode three does not stumble while delivering on characters and action alike.
+Nice mix of story and action
-Valroy is just "eh"
-Why is Loaderbot not mad anymore?